Unified communications and collaboration (UCC) is a phrase we are hearing more and more.
Businesses are starting to understand how important it could be to the success of their companies, not only from an employee perspective but for their clients as well. Investing in effective UCC creates more flexible work patterns and consequently increases productivity.
Ovum’s survey of 1,300 businesses looked at UCC and noted a good uptake in the technology. Unusually, not only did 80 percent say they were thinking about UCC within the next two years, but 80 percent of them actually had planned budget already allocated.
What’s driving the market?
Business process improvement is cited as the main reason for investing in UCC, followed by more flexible working patterns for employees. According to Ovum, one of the catalysts is enterprise mobility. At the moment there still is a lot of ‘unvetted’ bring-your-own-device (BYOD) activity with no formal corporate policy for support. Ovum predicted that more of those connections will be procured and managed by companies in future.
Increased productivity was, Ovum noted, more important that direct savings from UCC technologies.
Ovum pointed out that cloud was an option, though it didn’t have to be the only one. A mixed or hybrid model would work too.
The benefits of UCC
So the chances are that if you haven’t already begun your UCC project, you’re likely to be doing so shortly. What are the advantages? There are plenty of contenders, but for now let’s just focus on one of the main contenders – ShoreTel Connect.
ShoreTel Connect is the first platform of its kind to be built on a single software code base. That means you can design your communications system any way you choose: as a managed service from the cloud, as a hardware system you manage yourself, or as a hybrid deployment where some locations and applications are managed in the cloud and others are managed onsite.
The system provides much more that phone management. It’s a phone-text-mobile-conference-video-web share-online meeting system that’s sleek and easy to use. The result is a truly unified communications experience, bringing all of your multi-tasking communications tools together in one simple interface.
ShoreTel Connect provides a simple, natural way for employees, partners, and customers to engage and communicate, whether they remote or in the office. It saves time, and takes the frustration out of engaging so people can focus on getting their work done and their ideas heard. And when integrated into other business applications, ShoreTel Connect makes it easier to share insights, be more productive and grow the business.
Quickly and easily find contacts, check their availability, and connect with them via phone, IM, video, desktop sharing or and conference calling, without having to open separate windows or log in to new applications.
You can pay a monthly subscription whereby ShoreTel manages everything for you, or purchase a licensed product as a capital expense. Because it is based on a single code base, adds, changes, and updates are simple and include complete parity of features across both types of deployment. You decide when, if, and how to migrate to the cloud, meaning your investments are protected.